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Today I find myself in a new place. My son started Kindergarten. I’ll spare you the mommy feelings and share what that means to my business. I imagined when this day came years ago I would be posting a selfie here with a glass of champagne celebrating my achievement of being a successful momprenuer. I don’t quite feel that spark yet. It is covered up with those mommy feelings still. What it means is that I achieved something that felt so hard and almost impossible so many years ago and now today I couldn’t imagine life another way.
I’m here to tell you to allow yourself the chance to prove yourself- to yourself. What if today you decided to finally do something different this time? In the last 2 weeks have you set goals to create the change you want in your business? There is never a perfect time to take the chances you need to take for your business to be able to sustain itself. There is only the perfect moment when you change your focus and step out of your own way and start making things happen.
I’m taking this week of change to look at my business, set some new growth goals and look forward to the next milestone. Join me!
I join in with the craziness of fall. Actually, I join in on the craziness of most things because I’ll use any excuse to have a theme, celebrate something or decorate for something! However, fall is food for my creative soul. It seems like a new start each year where I find myself experiencing the most creative growth. I guess that is part of the beauty of living in the PNW. I can crack my office window and hear the rain, light a yummy smelling candle and pick a Pandora station and just like I’m off in my own world and my creativity becomes an addiction. So bring on the pumpkin everything, and a few stormy days and stay tuned for fun projects to come to light!
This brand in the making is a result of good collaboration between client and designer. My client had so many good thoughts swirling through her mind about how she wanted her brand to come together, specifically her logo. As a brand designer, I am aware that too many ideas can also be harmful. It is often responsible for stopping progress in its tracks! I was able to lead her through all her thoughts competing and changing in her mind through our process and funnel them down into the simple form unveiling a strong mark perfectly suited for her growing business.
My client started out by sending me pictures of her ranch and wanted to pull elements she loved about her home to wrap up into a logo. The leading ideas were a tree on her property, her sweet dog that holds her heart and her love for bees which is also a driver of her business. We agreed to incorporate all of those things into her brand to build the story but not the logo.
This logo is a nod to the tree on her property and the reference to bees shapes the tree. Getting down to this clear and focused logo took some work that has paid off. This is a beautiful logo that scales well to the smallest of size to the largest of size. It can be easily reversed in color, support several color versions and apply to a wide assortment of offerings within her business. You can also see that because we were able to keep this simpler in shape, it applies so well to special finishes like the emboss picture above, die cuts and more!
Way to go, Just Right Ranch! I can’t wait to see this brand take root.
Have you checked how your brand is performing lately? Click here to grade your brand.
Maybe it is your first or maybe this one of many but that doesn’t change the importance of organizing your trade show to result in a successful outcome. Here are some tips and things to think about as you begin to plan for your trade show.
- Is your branding on target? Give your brand a pulse check and find out if it is working as hard for you as you think it is. It needs to be consistent, strong and talk to your market. Here is a link to a handy worksheet to help you discover where to improve your brand.
- Little fish in the big sea? Don’t let that stop you from putting together a beautiful display booth. When you set up that day you want to feel confident of your space so that it will translate in your body language as you engage with those eager to meet you.
- Thinking of a brand refresh? Do it before your expo and make sure your new brand is reflected in every piece you have so that you get the most impact out of your new roll out and continue to build upon your brand recognition value. (Don’t use your old business cards if you have a brand new booth reflective of other design.
- Don’t forget your follow up. A large focus of an expo is gathering contacts. This is how you can increase your ROI on participating. What is the best way to get back in touch with your contacts post show? Email list, direct mail, promotional offers, open house invitation? Plan on a post show campaign to keep those contacts close for conversion.
With so many things to think about, don’t push it off too long. Trade show prep can be a lenghty process when you have to pull so many pieces together like content, design, production schedules, shipping, travel. Lets work together on creating a plan to get your pieces completed and ready without added stress of a time crunch. Email me to chat about your needs for your upcoming tradeshow.
I often hear from clients that they are having a hard time telling me what it is that they have in their head for their expectations on visual outcome. It can quickly become frustrating when you are trying to tell your designer in words and have it come out off target when translated visually. So what do you do?
Mood boards are magic, I promise. Take a look at this post in the archives to learn more about what a mood board is.
When you are having a hard time putting your thoughts into words to tell anyone, even your business partner then you need to take a different approach. Spend time gathering images off the internet that you’ve loved. Save those postcards you’ve gotten in the mail that made sense, take note of copy you enjoyed because it sounded great, pull those color swatches in the paint store because it is the perfect coral for your logo. Do all these things and compile them into a single image that you can look at and really see how all of these things you love visually work together once they are living in the same space together.
Once you have it all together, you may find that your love for glitter doesn’t belong in your brand, or you’ll find that it absolutely does. Visual clarity and focus will start to form. Take the time to do this and if you don’t have the interest to do this yourself, I can do it for you! Email me and we’ll start to pull it together.
Once you have a visual mood board it will be helpful for any designer that you choose to move forward with. A lot of things with design can’t be translated with words and so compiling a bunch of images together to do so proves very helpful on both sides with getting you up and running quicker and easier.
Have you ever struggled to know if a campaign has worked for you? Do you struggle to figure out where your clients come from? These are important things to know and define for your business. Here are a few ways you can track your marketing efforts:
- Google Analytics: Make sure it is installed properly so you are able to track links that you put out into the world and then be able to review their success.
- Direct Mail: Use a unique URL that you ask recipients to visit to learn more or get special offer. Track that URL to see how many people followed your call to action.
- Location Based Brochures: Use a specific phone number on the brochure that is only listed on that specific brochure offering, track those calls.
- Offer Codes: Vary your special offer codes in order to track where the most uses are coming from to help better plan future campaigns.
- Ask! Sometimes the hardest thing to do is simply ask where they heard about you, your business or your service. After you ask, you might find you can follow up with a referring outlet and thank them for their word of mouth and offer continued incentives for referrals.
Where you are putting your effort, make sure to put your attention into making sure you can track it.